In the summer, Izzy Bloomfield, a trustee of a little bit of HOPE in the UK, met some of the pupils who had been on an a little bit of HOPE sponsored IT project earlier in the year.
When I was in Busolwe this June, some of the best experiences I had involved chatting. I was in the office one particular day and some boys came in that had been on an IT training course, facilitated by a little bit of HOPE (Uganda).
I asked them about how they’d found the course and was overwhelmed by such a positive response. Being typical teenage boys they weren’t the most animated! But it was clear how grateful they were as each of them explained how helpful the IT course had been for them.
Uganda is embracing technology at an unbelievably fast rate and these boys know that gaining IT skills and knowledge is essential for them to find employment in the not-too-distant future. One of them explained that he now feels more confident at the possibility of applying for jobs which involve aspects of IT. It was significant for them to learn a tangible skill at school which enables them to be up to speed with writing, communicating, navigating; skills they know aren’t just important for themselves individually, but also for Uganda as a country, to engage in global communication, economics and social awareness.
I asked the boys sat in the office if they felt like they had learnt much on the IT course. I urged them to be honest and they all assured me that they’d learnt loads. To me, the things they learn seem pretty basic: for example navigating their way around the computer and creating word documents. But they were excited by the new skills they’d gained and more than one of them expressed how valuable they regard them. Because such a small number of people in Butaleja are computer literate, the boys feel like they’re getting a head-start and it was easy to see that they were encouraged and motivated by this. The effects of an IT training course may not be immediately put into use, but it was clear to see that these students were confidently hopeful for the impact that being computer literate will have on their futures.